Sunday, February 27, 2011

1861 Feb. 17 Letter to Sarah Blain (3705)? from Anna Bell (3703)

Letter written in ink on two sides of a sheet. From Anna Bell (3703) to her cousin (Sarah Blain?)

Home, Grundy County, Mo. 2nd month, 17th day, 1861

Dear Cousin,

I take my seat this evening to answer thy very acceptable letter which came to hand the 3rd day of last month. We were truly glad to hear from you once more. We are all enjoying usual health at present except father. His health is not very good, but he is able to be about the most of the time, and does the most of his feeding. The young man that cropped with him last summer is boarding here this winter, going to school. He gets our fire wood and helps some with the other work.

We have had a tolerably moderate winter, though very changeable with considerable snow. The ground has not been bare but a few days at a time since about Christmas. The waters are up so that the mail did not get in last week, and I don’t know whether it will this week or not. Probably if it keeps freezing it will, but if it don’t this letter will have to lay awhile.

There is considerable of excitement here about Missouri succeeding. There is to be elections held tomorrow at every regular voting place in the county to try to elect a union man to send to Jefferson City to be there the 28th of this month to see what he can do. I hope he may do some good. Yet some appear to think it almost useless to send him.

There was a singular circumstance took place here about 3 months ago. A woman by the name of Bagers drowned herself in Medicine Creek about 2 miles from here. She walked about four miles to the creek where she divested herself of a heavy underskirt and cloak. She hung them to the limb of a large tree that stood near the water. She then proceeded to the edge of the bank, took off her shoes and left them sitting where she started in, and hung her bonnet on a root that projected over the water. She tied a handkerchief over her head and face, and crossed her hands upon her breast, and then it seems made the fatal plunge. She was found the third day after her departure; here face was as fresh and red as it usually was when she was alive. Her parents live in this settlement. I was well acquainted with her, and had been with her a good-deal before her marriage which took place last spring. She left a note to her friends stating that her mind was almost gone and her heart nearly broke. Most of people think her mind was partially deranged. She had been promised to be married before. One of the men was drowned on his return from California, the other disappointed her willfully.

I cannot tell much about the prices of things for there’s not much selling. No person has much to buy with times pretty hard and a probability of their being harder. Health is generally pretty good. J O Johnson, one of our near neighbors, is very low with the consumption. I think he will hardly live a great while. No more at present. Please excuse all mistakes and bad writing and write soon.
from thy Affectionate Cousin

Anna Bell (3703)

Mother (3559) sends her best respects to you all.

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